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Full text of "The Cambridge Natural History"

SKELETON   OF  BATS

523

more strongly developed
in males than in females.
and may perhaps be
partly relegated to the
category of secondary
sexual characters. But
it seems that they have
also an important tactile
function, and enable the
creatures to fly without
touching bodies which
intrude themselves upon
their way. The ears,
too, are frequently very
large, and it may be
supposed that the sense
of hearing is correspond-
ingly acute. In the
common Long-eared Bat
of this country, the ears
are not greatly inferior
in length to the head
and body of the animal
combined. The ears are
of every variety of shape,
and offer characters
which are valuable in
the systematic arrange-
ment of the members of
the order.

In the skull of Bats
there is very rarely a
complete separation be-
tween the orbital and
temporal fossae ; the
lachrymal duct is out-
side the orbit. The
tympanics are annular,
and in a rudimentary
condition. The centra